In the 1840’s, Germans immigrated in large numbers to Cincinnati. The German population tended to cluster at the northern part of the city, today’s Over-the-Rhine. German entrepreneurs gradually built a profitable brewing industry that became associated with Over-the-Rhine. The brewing industry tended to concentrate along McMicken Avenue and the Miami and Erie Canal. During the nineteenth century most Cincinnatians regarded Over-the-Rhine as the city’s premier entertainment district. It was written “There is nothing comparable to the the completeness of the change brought about by stepping across the canal. (One enters an area) far more closely wedded to music and the dance, to the song, and life in the bright, open air.”
Today in OTR
Since 2006, about $93 million has been invested in the development and creation of the OTR Gateway Quarter starting near 12th and Vine Streets, the developement continues north along Vine Street to 15th. In addition to long time businesses, an infusion of new faces has come to Over-the-Rhine in recent years. These people are attracted by its large collection of Italianate, Muted Greek Revival, and Queen Anne architecture, and the sense of community that comes with “stoop sitting” culture, artists and others seeking an alternative to the traditional neighborhoods of Cincinnati’s suburbs. It’s the latest chapter of transformation in these neighborhoods that today makes Over-the-Rhine Cincinnati’s most creative, culturally and economically diverse neighborhood, and home to Cincinnati’s art community.
The OTR/Gateway Merchants Group
Formed in 2008, the OTR/Gateway Merchants Group is a collection of local business owners working together to promote locally owned businesses in the southern quarter of Over-The-Rhine. Email us at
OTR/Gateway Website Mini Press Kit
Logos, website screen shot image and an introductory press release